We believe in the power of sport to move the world forward, starting with kids. Kids who are active are healthier, happier and more successful in school and in their future careers. So we’re working with community partners across the globe to help get kids moving. We’re also training more coaches—including Nike employees—so they’re better prepared to give kids positive experiences in sport and play. We do this because we know the impact a supportive coach can have on a kid, and it goes well beyond the playing field. Here’s a spotlight on how these efforts have come to life in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
In London, Nike partnered with Kids Run Free to support Marathon Kids, a running program that encourages and trains kids to run or walk the distance of four marathons (104.8 miles), at their own pace, in a school year. This partnership has been going strong since 2016, and will reach up to 100,000 kids across the U.K. this year alone.
In Germany, Nike teamed up with the International Rescue Committee and a local organization called Buntkicktgut to launch Berlin Kickt, a football and education program designed to help refugee children across the city unleash their potential through sport. There are currently 15,000 refugee kids estimated to be living in Berlin, with many of them having fled war or conflict to get there. The Berlin Kickt community gives them the supportive community they need so they can thrive emotionally and physically. Almost all of the coaches in the program also come from migrant backgrounds, making them powerful role models for the kids.
Through the Nike Community Ambassador program, Nike has trained 5,700 retail employees all over the world to become coaches to help get kids active in their local communities. In Russia, where fewer than 1 in 4 boys — and 1 in 6 girls — gets the minimum recommended amount of daily physical activity (60 minutes), NCAs like Ekaterina Stupina, a footwear coach at the CLR Ordzhonikidze store, and Nikolay Vologin, assistant head coach of Core door Belaya Dacha, have volunteered hundreds of hours coaching kids. These employees understand all of the reasons why sport can have a positive impact on a kid’s life. For Stupina, who was diagnosed with a serious blood disease at age 7, sport became a lifeline that pushed her to fight through her illness. Vologin, on the other hand, participated in every sport possible growing up, which boosted his self-confidence and gave him the mental strength necessary to become a distance runner.